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Things I Learned on my Alpine Riding Trip – Packing And Gear

Packing

The Givi box liner worked out fantastically. Packing all of my clothing into gallon ziplock bags then packing them into the Bestem bag kept everything neat and tidy.

This represents all of the clothing and toiletries I packed for a 10 day trip:

Flying

The Oxford Handysack backpack again worked out great for a carry-on bag. I was able to keep all of my electronics close at hand, carry my helmet on board and keep my hands free. I ended up taking it along for the whole trip and found it useful on more than one occasion for toting stuff around.

Apparently Revzilla sells them.  In my opinion – worth the $26.

Riding Gear

My Klim Altitude gear is indeed waterproof. Saints be praised! It is warm when it’s hot and being that it has no native liners, you must dress yourself appropriately underneath the shell for the cold. As someone who likes layer dressing, that works out perfect for me. Also –  I look like an astronaut while wearing it.

Socks & Undies

Wash & wear clothing really skinnies down your packing list. BUT… having a pair of cotton underwear along is a necessity in my book. Synthetic fibers while wonderful for the easy wash/quick dry that they provide feel… unnatural. Having some cotton skivvies along is nice.

If you’re wearing leggings under your riding pants, you don’t need long socks. A pack of ankle socks works out great and packs at about the same size as 1 plush pair of long socks.

Photos

The telescoping GoPro stick is AWESOME for taking group shots. Being able to get our whole group into photos was great. I’m so happy I have the stick.

One of My Favorite Things About the Klim Altitude Jacket

When you get a new piece of riding gear, the first moment that you put it on everything is wonderful. It’s the best jacket/pants/pair of gloves you’ve ever had. It isn’t until down the road that you find the little things about it that bug you. Or on the flip side, you find something you really appreciate about the garment. You’ve really got to put it through it’s paces in different conditions to make a fair assessment.

That is one of my biggest gripes with the way riding gear is reviewed across the web. Someone takes one ride in a jacket and gives a review. You know? Riding 20 miles in a jacket doesn’t cut it. Wear it for a week, a month, in variable conditions THEN review it.

And I get it. Reviews need to be timely to sell the current model but the process is often flawed, in my opinion.

::Taking my curmudgeon hat off::

So, on the lighter side of things – Of course I LOVE the waterproofness of the gear. But if you would’ve told me that one of the things I would appreciate most about my Klim Altitude jacket was 2 stupid clips inside the front pockets, I would’ve rolled my eyes at you. Which I’m really good, by the way.

Two stinkin’ clips.

Inside of one pocket, I clip my itty bitty point-n-shoot camera and on the other, I clip in my SPOT tracker. And then… my life is perfect.

As a motorcyclist, you know how it goes. Sometimes you pull over to the side of the road to snap a photo and have to go fumbling around pulling your (non-DSLR) camera out. Maybe you keep it in your tankbag or topbox so that it doesn’t get wet. *fumble*fumble*walk*walk*snap*walk*walk*fumble*fumble*

Because my life is now perfect, I get off the bike (or maybe not) pull the camera out of my pocket without fear of dropping it, because in my perfect life it’s clipped to me, and *snap*. Then I willy-nill-illy shove the camera back in my pocket. And I am freeeeeee!

Life? Perfect.

 

Finally Ordered Myself a Spot Tracker

Well, I finally broke down and ordered a Spot Gen 3 Tracker. I hope that I never, ever need it and it becomes a $150 insurance policy.

I’d been waffling on the whole topic – feeling like I never go anywhere remote enough to warrant having one. But as history shows, I could fling myself down in to a ravine or get into trouble a few hundred miles from home just as easily as some highfalutin globe trotter.

The more I thought about it, the more I realized that just in the last 6 months I have been quite a few places that had no cell service. So,… what the hell? At the very least my mom can watch my progress on a road trip. (No matter how old you are you’re always Mama’s baby.)

They are offering a $50 rebate on the Spot Gen 3 right now if you’re on the fence. Perhaps that will sway you a bit.

Have you or anyone you know benefitted directly from using a Spot?

 

The Klim Altitude Jacket Has Landed!

It’s here! It’s finally here!

I’ve been waiting all week for my Klim Altitude jacket to show up. It finally arrived on Thursday after what felt like an eternity.

First impressions of it have left me with stars in my eyes. The fit and finish is wonderful but I think it takes weeks and months to know whether or not you love a riding garment.

Does this jacket make me look waterproof?
Does this jacket make me look waterproof?

It is at this point in our program where everyone can thank me for buying waterproof gear. We will be experiencing a drought from here on :D

You’re welcome!

Can I Finally Kiss My Raingear Goodbye?

On Thursday morning while being completely useless at work before the long 4th of July weekend, I decided to check out the ladies Klim gear on Revzilla.com. You know, “just looking.”

I don’t NEED new gear. I’ve got more jackets than I can possibly use. Just last spring I bought myself 2 new REV’IT jackets. What all of the gear - I’m apparently hoarding - has in common though, is that is isn’t waterproof. Yes, it all has rain liners and they work – to a point. But I absolutely would not trust that I could make it from my house on a multi-hundred mile trip on the slab in the pouring rain and be happy about it without the use of rain gear over top. That isn’t a knock against the gear – it doesn’t guarantee that it is waterproof. You know what you’re getting in to up front.

For the record – I don’t like interior rain liners. The outer garment becomes completely saturated and weighs a million pounds while you stand dripping on line at a 7-11 getting coffee.

Frankly, I don’t know why I bother with the whole “maybe I should…” charade. Once a thought enters my mind I’m pretty much all in. When I say something like “What do you think of this Klim jacket?” to Kenny, it can be taken as a clear indicator that I am about to buy it. And the pants.

And so I did.

Box numero uno containing my pants arrived bright and early on Saturday morning.

Now I play the waiting game with UPS to deliver my jacket. It is officially half-passed eternity, in case you were wondering.

Will this setup be the thing that makes me finally say goodbye to needing raingear? GORE-TEX guarantees waterproofness.

This spring while riding with two dudes in Klim gear, in the rain all the way to WV, they stayed dry. Not that I’m excited to find out – but, I’m excited to find out :D

What’s your experience with GORE-TEX riding gear?